Irving, Henry B.

Signed photo of the actor-lawyer and eldest son of Sir Henry Irving

Price: $30.00

Description:
(1870-1919) British stage actor-manager, eldest son of Sir Henry Irving. Although, as a child, he appeared several times in his father's productions, he attended Marlborough College and New College, Oxford where he studied law and appeared in some student productions. In 1894, he was called to the Bar at the Inner Temple, but decided instead to become an actor, taking the stage name H. B. Irving to distinguish himself from his father. His first stage appearance, at 21, was at the Garrick Theatre, London, in “School”. In 1906 he successfully toured the US, appearing in plays made memorable by his father, “The Lyons Mail”, “Charles I”, and “The Bells”. His early years as an actor were spent in his father's shadow, especially as, at first, he was a member of Sir Henry Irving's Company. In 1896, he married Dorothea Baird, then the best known actress in Britain. He continued with his father's company, but in 1898, joined George Alexander at the St James's Theatre, playing Don John in “Much Ado About Nothing”, and appeared in the surprising hit, “The Ambassador”. For the next 7 years, the couple moved between companies, sometimes together, sometimes separately. In 1900, they both appeared in Beerbohm Tree's production of “A Midsummer Night's Dream” that ran for 153 performances at Her Majesty's Theatre. In 1904, he played Hamlet for the first time, a success at the Adelphi Theatre. After his father's death, he established his own company with his wife, playing mainly repeats of his father's best remembered performances. For the opening night of the new King's Theatre in Southsea he presented “Charles I”, “The Bells” and “The Lyons Mail”. Other plays presented included, most successfully, “Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde” at the Queen's Theatre, London. In 1911, Irving, Baird and their London Company toured Australia with “Hamlet”. In 1913 he visited South Africa, and in 1914, appeared with Basil Rathbone in “The Sin of David” at the Savoy Theatre. During WW I, he withdrew from the theatre and returned to the law. He wrote the study for which he is now most famous, “A Book of Remarkable Criminals” (1918), which examined the lives, motivations and crimes of some infamous murderers, and “Life of Judge Jeffreys”, “French Criminals of the 19th Century” and other papers on the subject. After 20 years in the theatre, his greatest success came from being a legal expert. H.B. Irving was a founding member of Our Society with Arthur Conan Doyle (among others), and the still flourishing "Murder Club” in London where old crimes are discussed at regularly held dinners. SP, 5 ½ x 3 ½ undated waist-high b&w glossy English penny postcard portrait photograph by Dover St. Studios showing Irving in period costume attire with hat, cravat, waistcoat and jacket and piercing eyes.

Condition: Very good
Type:Photograph






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